Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Random Picture #159

Most, if not all, of the mochi I had in Japan was made domestically. The Japanese are pretty fussy about their rice and don't trust foreign-grown rice and mochi doesn't tend to age well. Most of what I saw in terms of mochi was white unless it was mixed with some other food like pumpkin or sweet potato. Occasionally, there would be pink ones that were colored with beet juice in order to make them match some seasonal or holiday colors (white and pink or red are festive colors in Japan).

One thing I don't recollect ever seeing were mochi as vividly colored as the ones pictured above. Most of the tones I saw were closer to pastels and these are more akin to jewel tones. Though these have Japanese writing on them, they were made in another Asian country (likely China or Taiwan, but I don't remember). My guess is that this sort of color can only come with the use of artificial coloring and that is frowned upon in Japan.

Though these are actually very pretty and reasonably priced, one of the lasting impacts of life in Japan for me has been a suspicion of anything which clearly shows unnatural coloring. I'd rather buy a muddy-looking or grey blob of mochi that looked real than something lovely such as these.


jtetsumi said...

I´ve bought a similar product from a japanese shop here in Brazil. Colorful. But it´s like tasting chewing gum. I believe it was taiwanese.

Orchid64 said...

Given that information, I'm really glad I didn't buy these!

Thanks for your comment.